If you have been in a car accident whether you wound up in the hospital or not from that accident you need to find a car accident lawyer nearby that can help you to manage the case. A car accident lawyer specializes in representing victims that have been involved in an accident.
There are a lot of different things that you will have to deal with after a car accident that you should not have to deal with on your own. Getting professional help can ensure that your rights are protected and that the car insurance company does not try to low ball you on a settlement or refuse to pay some of the costs.
Immediately following a car accident there are a few things that you need to do. The first thing you need to do is to make sure that you are safe. Call the police, and get out of the road, leave your car where it is and get to the side of the road.
If you have safety markers or lights set them out. Of course, if you are injured don’t move to wait for help. If you feel like you need medical care, or you just want to be checked out go to the hospital. Let the ambulance take you there.
Your safety and well being must come first. It is important that you get checked out medically. Once you are medically stable, that is when you call the auto insurance company to report the accident. Your next phone call should be to a car accident lawyer.
You will likely hear from an insurance adjuster shortly after having the accident, in some cases, insurance adjusters have been known to take statements from victims while they were in the hospital recovering.
You can tell the adjuster that you cannot speak to them at this time, then call a lawyer. A lawyer will not coach you on what to say but they will help you to prepare a statement for the adjuster.
Your Next Steps
It is important that you hire a car accident lawyer as soon as possible following an accident because sometimes the actual physical injury fallout after a car accident does not happen immediately. Having a car accident lawyer on your side can help you to get the medical care that you need.
Many times after a car accident you may feel fine, but 24 hours later, that changes. The reason many people feel okay at the time of the accident but then start to experience pain in their back, neck or other areas is because your body protects you from the shock of an accident by releasing adrenaline. Adrenaline is the hormone that gives you added strength and energy. It can protect your body but it can also mask pain.
Once the adrenaline levels start to subside you can really feel the trauma to your body from the accident. That is why it is so important not to confirm whether you are fine or not immediately following a car accident because you really cannot tell if you are or you are not.
You have to know when to use urgent care or the emergency room following a car accident to ensure that you get the care that you need. If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms within three days of following a car accident get medical care:
- Back ache, neck pain, shoulder pain
- Headache, nausea, dizziness
- Pain in any of your limbs or joints
Unless you are a doctor and can self-diagnose you need to get checked out medically. Some problems after a car accident do not crop up for days and can be serious problems. For example, whiplash is a common car accident injury, a concussion from banging your head or whipping your head back and forth during a car accident, sprains and soft tissue injuries also can result from a car accident.
Your health is too important to ignore warning signs that something is wrong. If your medical provider orders more testing, physical therapy, or treatments keep your appointments. It is the insurance companies responsibility to pay those medical bills. Get the medical care that you need and do not worry about the cost let your car accident lawyer worry about working costs out with the insurance company.
What Not To Do After a Car Accident
There are a few things that you should not do after a car accident to help protect yourself. You do not want to try to take on the insurance company on your own. Insurance carriers (even your own) have a one-tracked mind when it comes to handling car accident claims. They want to settle them quickly and for the least amount.
You do not want to make a settlement deal with the insurance company without speaking to a car accident lawyer first. Be mindful of what you say to the insurance adjuster. The adjuster will likely ask if they can record your conversation, speak to a lawyer before you speak to them.
Be careful of what you say to the adjuster when you do speak to them. Statements can often be misconstrued and used against you. Avoid things like “I feel fine” or “ I really think the neck pain is temporary”. Adjusters are not there to support you they work for the insurance carrier and their priority is to settle your claim for as little as possible in support of their bosses.
If your medical care provider has told you not to return to work for X amount of days, do not return to work. You have to follow your doctor’s orders to get back on your feet. You may feel pressured by your employer and by the insurance company to return to work sooner than your doctor recommends, don’t cave into the pressure. Speak to your lawyer about the pressure tactics that are being used, and he or she can step in on your behalf.
Do not talk to anyone about the car accident except your family and your lawyer. Again, statements can be misconstrued and held against you. It is best just not to speak about the car accident with anyone.
Remember we briefly hit on the fact that the insurance adjuster is not on your team, well that is putting it lightly. The insurance adjuster is completely on the side of the insurance carrier, that is after all who signs their paycheck.
Most adjusters are nice people, but they are bound by their duty to the insurance carrier, which means they will look for ways to make sure that your claim is kept under certain monetary limits. Whether it is auto parts for repairs, or getting medical care that you need, the adjuster is working against you. A car accident lawyer is a specialist that works for you.
Managing a car accident claim is a process whether you are in the right or not, you will still have to deal with a lengthy process before you start to shop for a new car and hopefully get the compensation that you deserve. During the process, it is important that you have a legal expert on your side because the insurance company is bringing a team of lawyers to the table to fight your claim every step of the way.
Managing the claim on your own without the support of a lawyer makes the insurance companies absolutely giddy with joy. They like nothing better than to deal directly with a victim and confuse them into thinking that they have to accept whatever the insurance company is offering.
Insurance companies have a totally different attitude about things when there is an experienced lawyer on board to help protect the rights of a car accident victim. Once you hire a lawyer all correspondence from the insurance company and the adjuster will go through the lawyer. You will not have to deal with any of it.
Without a lawyer you will have to negotiate on your own and can easily be persuaded by the insurance company that they are doing everything that they can to make the process easier for you. The fact is unless you are well-versed in motor vehicle accident laws you are putting yourself in a position of being taken advantage of.
In a nutshell, the lawyer makes the entire process easier from managing claim documents to negotiating on your behalf to fighting in court if necessary to protect your rights. If you are the victim of a car accident you do not have to deal with this on your own.
Benefits of Lawyering Up
A car accident can be devastating financially when there are injuries involved that keep you from working. Between financial pressures and dealing with healing from injuries, the stress can be tremendous on you and your family after a car accident.
Unfortunately, the insurance companies know that you are under financial pressure and all the other pressures that are caused by a car accident and they take advantage of it. They will make ridiculously low offers to settle your claim because they know that you need the money.
One of the benefits of having a car accident lawyer is that they can manage a lot of the stress for you so you are not at risk of caving into settling your case for less than you deserve. Your lawyer will step in and fight the insurance company.
They will fight to get the best possible outcome for your case and take a lot of the burden off your shoulders. The last thing that you need when you are dealing with recovery from a car accident is to be stressed out worrying about finances or fighting with the insurance company. Your lawyer can do all that for you so you can focus on healing.
A car accident lawyer is an expert in the law and will use those laws to ensure that your rights are protected. You can rest easy and focus on healing and putting your life back together after an accident when you have a lawyer on your side.
Other benefits in addition to saving you stress, aggravation, and making sure you get the compensation that you deserve includes:
- An attorney is your partner in the case and is motivated to see you do well
- An attorney improves your odds of doing well
- An attorney will know when the best time to settle is and will be there to go to court if necessary
Your attorney is your partner. You do not pay upfront for the legal services in most car accident cases. Most car accident lawyers work on contingency. Contingency means that you do not pay any money upfront. You pay the lawyer after you get your settlement. Typically the lawyer will charge a percentage of your settlement.
Partnering with a car accident lawyer means that you get the support that you need for your accident without any out of the pocket expense. In other words, you have nothing to lose, and a lot to gain.
An attorney will improve your odds of getting the compensation that you deserve from the car accident, even if you have car insurance already. While most cases never make it to court sometimes they do and you will need a lawyer to fight in court for you.
Get the Support You Need
This is not something that you have to navigate on your own. There is a car accident lawyer nearby that can help you navigate this situation and get the outcome that you hope for. Get the legal protection that you deserve and the peace of mind that you want.